Australian girls celebrate 100 years of changing lives Girl Guides Australia, the organisation that provides a unique 'girl only' space, will celebrate 100 years of Guiding with a host of exciting events and activities across the country from September this year through to the end of 2010, 'The Year of the Girl Guide'1.
Girl Guides, the largest worldwide voluntary organisation for girls and young women, has been developing leadership skills to and building confidence in Australian girls for nearly a century. The organisation operates in each state, and more than one million Australian women have been or are still Girl Guides. Guiding exists in 145 countries with an international membership of more than ten million and close to 30,000 members in Australia.
Girl Guides Australia Chief Commissioner, Lynne Price, says giving girls new experiences, new challenges and new ways to grow has been the organisation's focus for nearly 100 years and that its goal is to continue to transform girls' lives for the next 100 years.
"In the past century, Girl Guides have used their skills, teamwork and voices to help shape a better world. In fact, Guides have been active participants in Australian history, often in the background of significant historical events."
Mrs Price adds that the benefits of Guiding are well documented, and that Girl Guides Australia, through its non-formal education programs, provides girls with important life, decision-making and leadership skills, and inspires them to be active and contributing members of their communities.
"Recent research from the United Kingdom confirms what we have always suspected - that girls involved with Guiding stand out among their peers in their commitment to volunteering, community action and their responsibilities as world citizens."
Current and former Guides will have plenty of opportunities to celebrate the Centenary, with national and local, state-based, celebrations planned throughout the Centenary.
Celebrations will officially kick off on Friday, 4 September, with the Girls Celebrate event at the Girl Guides camp Kindilan, near Brisbane, Queensland. The 48 hour festivities will include activities such as sleeping under the stars and campfire sing-alongs, as well as interactive Activity Pods where Girl Guides will have the opportunity to attend workshops and discuss topics that affect them, such as global warming and climate change, preventing bullying, discovering their potential, the importance of physical and mental health, and preventing cruelty to animals.
The Centenary festivities will continue throughout 2010, and will be highlighted by the Australian Centenary Event (ACE) Jamboree which will take place from 3-9 January 2010 in Victoria. The Girl Guides camp will welcome 2,500 Guides and Leaders from across Australia and around the world. Activities will be numerous and will include horse riding, sailing, surfing, swimming, helping sick or injured animals and visiting the fairy penguins and seals at Phillip Island, to name a few.
In addition to Girls Celebrate and ACE, Australian Guides will also celebrate the Centenary by undertaking special Centenary projects, like the International Service Challenge - a strategic partnership with UNICEF to support girls' education in Papua New Guinea through education and fundraising activities, as well as taking part in key calendar events such as International Women's Day, Clean Up Australia Day, ANZAC Day, and World Environment Day, as well as the Centenary Biscuit campaign and the Campfires Around Australia initiative.
For more information about Girls Guides Australia or the Centenary celebrations, visit www.girlguides.org.au. About Girl Guides Australia
Girl Guides is a safe, fun place for girls to try new things, make great friends, develop new skills and gain confidence. Girl Guides is the largest organisation for girls and young women in Australia, with 10 million Girl Guides and Girl Scouts from diverse cultures and religions in 145 countries worldwide.
To find out more about joining Guides or becoming a Guide Leader visit www.girlguides.org.au.
Related Article: www.girl.com.au/girlguides.htm
100 years of Girl Guides
Girl Guides Background
Girl Guides, the world's largest voluntary organisation for girls and young women, has been operating for nearly a century.
Australia today boasts 30,000 members and belongs to a worldwide Guiding family which extends to 145 countries, with a membership of more than ten million. More than one million Australian women have been or are still Guides.
The Girl Guides movement, founded in 1910, began through the demand by a small group of girls to join in an organisation which had just begun for boys: Boy Scouts.
The establishment of the Girl Guides1907 - Robert Baden-Powell officially starts the Boy Scouts.
1909 - First Scout Rally is held at the Crystal Palace in London, England, and is attended by more than 10,000 boys as well as a small group of girls who demand to be recognised as girl scouts and allowed to follow the same program as the boys.
Baden-Powell writes A Scheme for Girl Guides with the help of his sister, Agnes Baden-Powell.
1910 - The Girl Guides Association is officially started, with Agnes Baden-Powell acting as President of the multifaith Association.
Australia joins in 1910 - Girl Guides sweeps across Australia, where the movement develops independently in each state. Eventually, each state becomes organised, setting up a headquarters, forming a state executive, and appointing a state commissioner:
· Tasmania, 1911
· South Australia, 1913
· Western Australia, 1915
· Queensland, 1919
· New South Wales, 1920
· Victoria, 1921
1925 - First interstate camp for leaders held at Camden, NSW.
1926 - State representatives gather at Government House in Melbourne, VIC, to form a Federal Council of the Girl Guides Associations of Australia.
1928 - World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is formed with Australia as a founding member.
1930 - Lady Baden-Powell proclaimed the World Chief Guide.
1933 - First Australian Training Camp and Commissioners Conference at Jamberoo, NSW.
1939 - World War II declared. Girl Guides around the world assist with war effort and are involved in the Guide International Service.
1945 - Guiding established in Northern Territory.
1947 - Irene Fairbairn becomes First Federal Commissioner for Australia (which in 1952 becomes known as the Chief Commissioner of Guides Australia).
1951 - First international Girl Guides camp held at Narrabeen, NSW.
1954 - First visit of a reigning monarch to Australia: H.M. Queen Elizabeth and H.R.H. Prince Philip. Girl Guides take part in a number of activities to highlight the occasion.
1960 - Special postage stamp issued to celebrate 50 years of Guiding.
1963 - First Australian Guiding Policy Organisation & Rules published (until then Australian Guiding operated under the UK model).
1969 - The first Australian-designed leadership program for girls was introduced.
1970 - Australia hosts its first international training for trainers in Sydney, NSW.
1976 - Australian Guiding Association celebrates 50 years with a ribbon of gold trees planted across Australia.
1977 - The death of Lady Baden-Powell
1980 - Guiding in Australia, national magazine incorporating state magazines, published.
1985 - 75th anniversary of Guiding; special celebrations held across Australia.
1988 - Australian bicentenary; Guiding celebrations and special events held in all states, with a special camp (Porapunka) in NSW attended by Guides from around the world.
1996 - New Australian Guide program is launched.
2001 - National Convention of Guides Australia takes place in Hobart, Tasmania.
2004 - National Convention of Guides Australia takes place in Sydney, NSW.
2005 - The Friendship Train travels around Australia with Guiding participants from around the world.
2007 - The name 'Girl Guides Australia' is officially adopted.
2008 - First female Governor General of the Commonwealth of Australia, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC, becomes patron of Girl Guides Australia.
2009 - The Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announces 2010 to be designated the Year of the Girl Guide, acknowledging the invaluable contribution of Girl Guides Australia over the past century.